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Alicia Keys debuts her first holiday album and says she’d love to collaborate with Mariah Carey

<i>James Devaney/GC Images/Getty Images</i><br/>
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James Devaney/GC Images/Getty Images

By Chloe Melas, CNN

Alicia Keys is giving you the holiday classics with a twist.

The 15-time Grammy winner spoke with CNN about recording her first holiday album, “Santa Baby,” and the importance of debuting it on her own record imprint. Keys parted ways with Sony Music last year after spending more than two decades at the label, joining a growing number of artists who are gaining more ownership and creative control of their music.

“The album that I just released for the holidays, being the first release on my own imprint, it feels really exciting. I also feel very determined and focused on how I want to continue to be not only my own woman, who is creating the proper business and really being my own boss and creating the opportunities that I want, but also thinking about how does that happen with other artists, with other women,” Keys told CNN in a recent interview.

“I’m really, really ecstatic about Alicia Keys Records. It’s a big statement being an artist who has been able to have the gift and the tenacity of longevity,” Keys added.

“Santa Baby” debuted exclusively on Apple Music and climbed to No. 1 on the platform. While Mariah Carey is considered by many to be “Queen of Christmas” with her holiday classic “All I Want for Christmas Is You,” Keys said she’s not trying to compete and would love to collaborate with Carey.

“I am my own queen and she is her own queen and I totally uplift her,” Keys said. “I think she’s incredible. I would love for us to … I can’t believe we’ve never done music together. We need to, there’s so much that we have in common. She’s an incredible writer and producer.”

“I wanna do nothing but honor her,” Keys added of Carey. “She got her lane, I got my lane and there, we got our lanes. If anything, we can come together and do something fresh!”

Keys also has a holiday line of athleisure with Athleta, which, she said, is filling a much-needed void in the fashion industry.

“It’s all about body diversity. It goes up to size three X. There’s not a person or a shape or a style or a size that doesn’t belong in this collection. And I love that. I think so many times you feel excluded. You feel like if you don’t look a certain way, you’re not beautiful. You feel like if you’re not a certain size you’re not accepted and it’s not true.”

More than two decades after bursting onto the scene with her hit album “Songs in A Minor,” Keys, in some ways, is just getting started.

“The business can get the best of you and can kind of take everything from you. So for me to be able to be here, 20 years later, to be fresher than I’ve ever been, to be more in control of my life than I’ve ever been, to have learned a ton of things and to be ready to really be the businesswoman that I’ve always been and [now] take it to the next level.”

If you’re in the mood for a holiday concert of your own, Keys recently taped a special hometown Holiday Masquerade Ball performance in New York City, which will air later this month on Apple Music as part of Apple Music Live.

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